Suspected drug lord Kerwin Espinosa has allegedly given a total of P8 million “protection money” to Senator Leila de Lima.
This according to Senator Manny Pacquiao, who video-recorded his conversation with Espinosa hours after the latter was brought to Camp Crame in Quezon City straight from Abu Dhabi last November 18.
“Ayon sa kanyang sinabi sa akin e si (he told me it was) Leila de Lima,” Pacquiao said in an interview over ABS-CBN News Channel’s morning show “Headstart” on Tuesday when asked which senator Kerwin implicated in illegal drugs.
“Binanggit n’ya na P8 million ‘yung naibigay n’ya du’n kay De Lima totally (He said that he gave De Lima P8 million in total),” he added.
The money, Pacquiao said, was allegedly given to De Lima, then justice secretary, on a monthly basis.
Asked what Espinosa would get from the lady senator in exchange for his money, Pacquiao said, “Ang sinabi sa kanya, parang may proteksyon ka (He was told that it was for his protection).”
“Sabi ni Kerwin, ‘paano ko masigurado na may proteksyon talaga ako? Paano ko masigurado na si Ma’am talaga ang nag-uutos sa’yo o ano?’ Kaya later on pinapunta s’ya sa Baguio,” he said.
(Kerwin told me he asked the mediator, “how can I be sure that I will be protected? How can I be sure that it is really Ma’am ordering you?” That is why he was later made to go to Baguio.)
Pacquiao then narrated how Espinosa supposedly met De Lima in Baguio, allegedly through the latter’s former driver, Ronnie Dayan.
“Paano s’ya napunta sya Baguio? Dahil itong si Dayan ang komontak pala sa kanya. Tapos pinapunta sya ni Dayan du’n sa Baguio,” he said.
(Why did he go to Baguio? It turned out it was Dayan who contacted him and asked him to go to Baguio.)
“Hindi naman n’ya (Espinosa) alam na.. may relasyon silang (De Lima and Dayan) dalawa. Basta tao s’ya ni De Lima tapos pinapunta s’ya sa Baguio and then nagkita sila d’on tapos sinabi sa kanya nandyan, na meet n’ya si De lima…’O, alam mo na s’ya ang may utos sa akin,’” Pacquiao said.
(He did not know that they had a relationship. He just knew that he worked for De Lima and that De Lima wanted him to go to Baguio, and that was where they met. (It was as if Dayan was telling him) “Now you know she was the one who ordered me.”)
De Lima has already admitted that she had an affair with Dayan but she has repeatedly denied any involvement in illegal drugs.
Aside from De Lima, Pacquiao said Espinosa had implicated a number of police officials allegedly involved in drugs.
The police, he said, were allegedly giving the suspected drug lord advance information about their operations.
“Ini-inform s’ya in advance . Sinasabi sa kanya ng police o mag check point kami d’yan, huwag kayong dumaan dyan…Ang police nag i-instruct sa kanya,” Pacquiao added.
(He was being informed in advance. The police would tell him where they conducted checkpoints and advise him not to go there. It was the police that instructed him.)
Espinosa is expected to appear at the resumption of the Senate probe into the killing of his father, Albuera, Leyte Rolando Espinosa Sr. inside his detention cell last November 5. IDL/rga